Old Guard Hse Inn

★★★★☆
  • 953 Youngsford Rd

    Gladwyne, PA 19035

    Map & Directions
  • 610-649-9708

About Old Guard Hse Inn

Hours
Mon. - Thu., Sun. 5:30pm - 9:30pm;Fri. - Sat. 5:30pm - 10pm

Food

Food
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4.0 2
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The Guard House, Gladwyne's only restaurant that's open for dinner, has been around since the 1700s, originally a coach stop if I'm correct. It's been pleasing people for as long as we've lived here, over 30 years, & its owner believes you don't mess with success. Apparently his patrons agree. The cuisine is heavy, German-influenced, served in ample portions and the opposite of cutting-edge.

The ambiance at The Guard House is nothing short of wonderful. Think of a ski lodge. Intimate bar that's always filled with locals, low ceilings, lots of old, old exposed beams, uneven wood floors, a large fireplace, warrens of small rooms filled with conservatively dressed patrons, at least 50% of whom are wearing jackets & ties. (We brought the sartorial quotient down. It was 11 degrees for goodness sake!) Although 2 weeks ago I'd requested a table in one of the older rooms, hopefully in front of the fireplace, we were ushered to the back room, which while perfectly nice, was newer & terribly drafty. The hostess said she was unable to reseat us as the restaurant was full.

We were joined by another couple who'd dined there last week & were perfectly content to repeat the visit.

Let's just say service was lax: A waitress who had difficulty smiling; a longer than average wait to take our orders; forgotten glassware requests, etc. Although it was only 7 P.M. they could only find 4 slices of black bread, having run out that early.

One of our friends ordered snapper soup as an appetizer with the request to add additional "meat" in it. He could scarcely find any in the cup when it arrived & wondered what the regular serving would've yielded. His wife & I each had an excellent salad, cinnamon-poached pears, greens, pecans, hers with gorgonzola & prosciutto, mine without. The portion was good-sized, one that easily could've served as a lunch-time entree. My husband had a cream of mushroom soup which he pronounced delicious. At first he felt that the small cup of soup wouldn't be enough. However, he hadn't counted on the richness factor. As the waitress put it, "There's just a hint of cream."

My husband was thrilled with his entree: Calves liver with bacon (reduced red wine sauce), mashed potatoes, baby carrots & green beans. He gobbled up every morsel & was extremely happy with something that he hasn't had in years. Our friend's wife had grilled swordfish with a ginger/honey glaze & the same vegetables. We all requested that our vegetables be steamed. One thing in their favor is that they state on the menu that they'll respond to any dietary needs & they gave three of us extra vegetables in place of the choice of mashed or scallopped potatoes. I & the fourth of our party ordered grilled salmon with the aforementioned carrots & beans. His was fine. Mine was inedible & was sent back because it must've had the entire box of salt dumped on it. I tried tasting various parts of the fish, thinking perhaps too much accidently had found its way into one spot. It was not so. It simply was too heavy-handed. The second fillet, however, was perfectly fine. My guess is that they didn't season it at all, leaving it to me to add what I wished.

None of us ordered dessert. However, a cookie accompanies your coffee or tea. My cappuccino was quite good. A dish of good-quality chocolate-covered strawberries is brought to the table with your bill, a nice touch, which as far as I'm concerned is a perfectly satisfying dessert.

The tab with two cocktails (maybe three?), a beer, & a glass of terrible shiraz came to $120 a couple inclusive of the tip. Would that we could find the convenience (5 min. from home) & the utterly warm, cozy ambiance, combined with food that's more to our taste.

We've since returned to The Guard House & this time I brought my own salt, having requested that they not salt my food at all. The result was far better. You just have to know how to deal with a place that has much that you like and can work to correct what you don't.

3
★★★☆☆

The Guard House, Gladwyne's only restaurant that's open for dinner, has been around since the 1700s, originally a coach stop if I'm correct. It's been pleasing people for as long as we've lived here, over 30 years, & its owner believes you don't mess with success. Apparently his patrons agree. The cuisine is heavy, German-influenced, served in ample portions and the opposite of cutting-edge.

The ambiance at The Guard House is nothing short of wonderful. Think of a ski lodge. Intimate bar that's always filled with locals, low ceilings, lots of old, old exposed beams, uneven wood floors, a large fireplace, warrens of small rooms filled with conservatively dressed patrons, at least 50% of whom are wearing jackets & ties. (We brought the sartorial quotient down. It was 11 degrees for goodness sake!) Although 2 weeks ago I'd requested a table in one of the older rooms, hopefully in front of the fireplace, we were ushered to the back room, which while perfectly nice, was newer & terribly drafty. The hostess said she was unable to reseat us as the restaurant was full.

We were joined by another couple who'd dined there last week & were perfectly content to repeat the visit.

Let's just say service was lax: A waitress who had difficulty smiling; a longer than average wait to take our orders; forgotten glassware requests, etc. Although it was only 7 P.M. they could only find 4 slices of black bread, having run out that early.

One of our friends ordered snapper soup as an appetizer with the request to add additional "meat" in it. He could scarcely find any in the cup when it arrived & wondered what the regular serving would've yielded. His wife & I each had an excellent salad, cinnamon-poached pears, greens, pecans, hers with gorgonzola & prosciutto, mine without. The portion was good-sized, one that easily could've served as a lunch-time entree. My husband had a cream of mushroom soup which he pronounced delicious. At first he felt that the small cup of soup wouldn't be enough. However, he hadn't counted on the richness factor. As the waitress put it, "There's just a hint of cream."

My husband was thrilled with his entree: Calves liver with bacon (reduced red wine sauce), mashed potatoes, baby carrots & green beans. He gobbled up every morsel & was extremely happy with something that he hasn't had in years. Our friend's wife had grilled swordfish with a ginger/honey glaze & the same vegetables. We all requested that our vegetables be steamed. One thing in their favor is that they state on the menu that they'll respond to any dietary needs & they gave three of us extra vegetables in place of the choice of mashed or scallopped potatoes. I & the fourth of our party ordered grilled salmon with the aforementioned carrots & beans. His was fine. Mine was inedible & was sent back because it must've had the entire box of salt dumped on it. I tried tasting various parts of the fish, thinking perhaps too much accidently had found its way into one spot. It was not so. It simply was too heavy-handed. The second fillet, however, was perfectly fine. My guess is that they didn't season it at all, leaving it to me to add what I wished.

None of us ordered dessert. However, a cookie accompanies your coffee or tea. My cappuccino was quite good. A dish of good-quality chocolate-covered strawberries is brought to the table with your bill, a nice touch, which as far as I'm concerned is a perfectly satisfying dessert.

The tab with two cocktails (maybe three?), a beer, & a glass of terrible shiraz came to $120 a couple inclusive of the tip. Would that we could find the convenience (5 min. from home) & the utterly warm, cozy ambiance, combined with food that's more to our taste.

We've since returned to The Guard House & this time I brought my own salt, having requested that they not salt my food at all. The result was far better. You just have to know how to deal with a place that has much that you like and can work to correct what you don't.

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This has to be one of the regions best resturant. When you walk in there is a small bar which is often filled with local residents of all walks of life. The entire resturant is designed to feel like an old inn with mounted animals on the bark covered walls. The food is top of the line with many continental dishes such as Venison, Dove Sole, as well as salads such as hearts of lettuce and appietizes including carpaccio. Reservations are suggest on Fridays and Saturdays. The uncommon ability to order any menu item for take out is unique for a resuturant of this quality. It has to be the regions best kept secert for amazing food.

2
★★★★★

This has to be one of the regions best resturant. When you walk in there is a small bar which is often filled with local residents of all walks of life. The entire resturant is designed to feel like an old inn with mounted animals on the bark covered walls. The food is top of the line with many continental dishes such as Venison, Dove Sole, as well as salads such as hearts of lettuce and appietizes including carpaccio. Reservations are suggest on Fridays and Saturdays. The uncommon ability to order any menu item for take out is unique for a resuturant of this quality. It has to be the regions best kept secert for amazing food.

Pros: food, service, atmosphere

 

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